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Gallatin County, Illinois facts for kids

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Gallatin County
Gallatin County Courthouse in Shawneetown
Gallatin County Courthouse in Shawneetown
Map of Illinois highlighting Gallatin County
Location within the U.S. state of Illinois
Map of the United States highlighting Illinois
Illinois's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Illinois
Founded 1812
Named for Albert Gallatin
Seat Shawneetown
Largest city Shawneetown
Area
 • Total 328 sq mi (850 km2)
 • Land 323 sq mi (840 km2)
 • Water 5.1 sq mi (13 km2)  1.6%
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 5,589
 • Estimate 
(2018)
5,058
 • Density 17.040/sq mi (6.579/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 15th

Gallatin County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 4,828, making it the third-least populous county in Illinois. Its county seat is Shawneetown. It is located in the southern portion of Illinois known locally as "Little Egypt".

Located at the mouth of the Wabash River, Gallatin County, along with neighboring Posey County, Indiana, and Union County, Kentucky form the tri-point of the Illinois-Indiana-Kentucky Tri-State Area.

History

Salt production served as the state's first major industry in the early 19th century. Saltworks developed first by Native Americans and the French at the Great Salt Spring on the south side of the Saline River about five miles downstream from Equality. Beginning in 1803, salt works developed also at Half Moon Lick southwest of Equality on the north side of the Saline River. Today Half Moon Lick is on private land, but the Great Salt Springs are located on public lands in the Shawnee National Forest about one mile west of the Saline River bridge across Illinois Route 1 on Salt Well Road.

The county was organized in 1812, having been formed from Randolph County. The county was named for Albert Gallatin, who was Secretary of the Treasury at the time. At that time the bank at Shawneetown was the only bank in Illinois. It was the one later associated with the John Marshall House, which has been rebuilt and serves as museum for the Gallatin County Historical Society. It is not to be confused with the larger State Bank of Illinois building that is now a state historic site about a block away in what is now Old Shawneetown

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 328 square miles (850 km2), of which 323 square miles (840 km2) is land and 5.1 square miles (13 km2) (1.6%) is water.

The Wabash and Ohio rivers join in the northeastern part of the county. The Saline River is a major drainage in the county, and it feeds into the Ohio River.

Climate and weather

Weather chart for Shawneetown, Illinois
J F M A M J J A S O N D
 
 
3.5
 
41
21
 
 
3.7
 
47
24
 
 
4.7
 
57
33
 
 
4.8
 
68
42
 
 
5
 
76
52
 
 
4.2
 
84
60
 
 
4.2
 
87
65
 
 
3.5
 
87
63
 
 
3.2
 
80
55
 
 
3.2
 
70
43
 
 
4.4
 
57
34
 
 
4.3
 
46
25
temperatures in °F
precipitation totals in inches
source: The Weather Channel

In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Shawneetown have ranged from a low of 21 °F (−6 °C) in January to a high of 87 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −22 °F (−30 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 104 °F (40 °C) was recorded in August 2007. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 3.22 inches (82 mm) in October to 5.02 inches (128 mm) in May.

Major highways

  • US 45.svg U.S. Highway 45
  • Illinois 1.svg Illinois Route 1
  • Illinois 13.svg Illinois Route 13
  • Illinois 141.svg Illinois Route 141
  • Illinois 142.svg Illinois Route 142

Adjacent counties

National protected area

  • Shawnee National Forest (part)

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 3,155
1830 7,405 134.7%
1840 10,760 45.3%
1850 5,448 −49.4%
1860 8,055 47.9%
1870 11,134 38.2%
1880 12,861 15.5%
1890 14,935 16.1%
1900 15,836 6.0%
1910 14,628 −7.6%
1920 12,856 −12.1%
1930 10,091 −21.5%
1940 11,414 13.1%
1950 9,818 −14.0%
1960 7,638 −22.2%
1970 7,418 −2.9%
1980 7,590 2.3%
1990 6,909 −9.0%
2000 6,445 −6.7%
2010 5,589 −13.3%
2018 (est.) 5,058 −9.5%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2017
USA Gallatin County, Illinois age pyramid
2000 census age pyramid for Gallatin County

2010

Whereas according to the 2010 census:

2000

As of the 2010 census, there were 5,589 people, 2,403 households, and 1,556 families residing in the county. The population density was 17.3 inhabitants per square mile (6.7/km2). There were 2,746 housing units at an average density of 8.5 per square mile (3.3/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 97.9% white, 0.3% American Indian, 0.2% black or African American, 0.1% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.2% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 23.6% were German, 22.9% were Irish, 10.7% were English, and 7.0% were American.

Of the 2,403 households, 26.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.6% were married couples living together, 10.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 35.2% were non-families, and 31.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.87. The median age was 44.4 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $38,003 and the median income for a family was $48,892. Males had a median income of $38,801 versus $22,425 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,537. About 12.4% of families and 18.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.9% of those under age 18 and 14.9% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

City

Villages

Unincorporated communities

Townships

  • Asbury
  • Bowlesville
  • Eagle Creek
  • Equality
  • Gold Hill
  • New Haven
  • North Fork
  • Omaha
  • Ridgway
  • Shawnee
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